Bobcat Weekend Preview: Bobcats Make Only Austin Trip of 2014-15
Matchups: Bismarck Bobcats (6-6-0, 4th Central) vs. Austin Bruins (6-2-4, 1st Central)
Games: Friday, October 24, 7:05pm; Saturday, October 25, 7:05pm
Place: Riverside Arena, Austin, Minn.
This Year: Series tied 1-1-0
All-Time: Bobcats lead Bruins 26-16-2
Radio: SuperTalk 1270 AM, 6:35pm, both nights
Internet TV: http://NAHL.FASTHockey.com, 6:35pm, both nights
AUSTIN, MN – Though the season is still three games shy of the quarter pole, the Bismarck Bobcats will pay their final visit of the 2014-15 campaign to Riverside Arena for a two-game series against the rival Austin Bruins, starting Friday at 7:05pm.
The Bobcats enter fresh off having swept a weekend for the first time all year, with wins over the Bruins and Aberdeen Wings; Austin hopes to bounce back after earning just one point in two games between Bismarck and Minot.
“We know that Austin is going to be a motivated team coming home after four road games and that will be very tough to play against,” cautioned Bobcats head coach and general manager Layne Sedevie, whose squad went 3-3-0 at Riverside a season ago, “but we still need to focus on ourselves. Our biggest battle is with consistency: we can go to Aberdeen and hold them to three shots in the first period then come out and get outshot 15-6 in the second.
“Our team has shown the ability to dominate, but not to do it for 60 minutes—and that’s our goal.”
Goaltending will take center stage in Austin, with two netminders in the league’s top 10 for goals against average in the Bobcats’ Alex Bitsakis (third, 1.29) and the Bruins’ Zach Driscoll (sixth, 1.79). That is not even to mention Austin’s Jake Kielly, who got the win in Bismarck on September 27, and Cats rookie Hunter Shepard, winner of the Frank Brimsek Award last season for the top high school goalie in Minnesota.
Power play goals also figure to be at a premium on the weekend: Austin sits second league-wide with a penalty kill efficiency of 91.4% while the Bobcats own an 87.0% rating, good for fifth in the NAHL.
The two-game set will close out the Cats’ stretch of 12 out of 14 games away from the VFW Sports Center to open the year; of the following 13 games on the schedule, nine will be at home for the Bobcats.
Live coverage of Friday’s series opener will begin at 6:35pm locally on SuperTalk 1270, KLXX-AM, the radio home of Bobcat Hockey, and worldwide online at NAHL.FASTHockey.com, the official web television partner of the North American Hockey League.
Though the 2014-15 season is now under way, there is still time to order season tickets for the year; fans who want to lock in their seats for the entire campaign should call the Bobcat office at 222-3300 today!